Bill Walton: Back Pain Made Me Consider Suicide
Walton, one of the all-time-great basketball players, a man whose intelligence and enthusiasm enabled him to roll over every pothole in his past and find success in most every endeavor he’s undertaken, admits the incredible pain brought about by a bad back took him to the brink, where he contemplated taking his own life.
“I’m getting back into the game of life,” Walton, throwing both of his long arms in the air, was saying as we sat outside his San Diego home. “I have a new life now. It got to the point where my life wasn’t worth living. I was standing on the edge of the bridge, figuring it was better to jump than to go back to where I was.”
Suicide? Bill Walton? This is a man who wanted to be a great basketball player and became one. This is a man who, as a youngster, had a speech impediment and beat it — to the point where, for 19 years, he became one of the most prominent basketball broadcasters, an Emmy winner. This is a man who knew how to play with pain — until this.